By their first birthday, children have developed a clear understanding that they are an important person. They explore the world around them by getting into everything and spending a short amount of time on each activity. In order to keep toddlers busy and happy, caregivers have many activities and developmentally appropriate curriculum. Learning to get along with others, care for themselves, think for themselves and express themselves are important skills that one year olds are beginning to learn.

We use the activities in “Baby Doll Circle Time” curriculum to guide us as we provide developmental care for these children. We blend this with Growing Room’s own Growing Up on Our Block curriculum. The goal of this combined approach is to help these children develop both their minds and bodies.

We provide the following key experiences in our Toddler classrooms:

Listening and talking

  • Books and pictures:Children are read to frequently every day and play simple picture games.
  • Conversation:Children are encouraged to use or show understanding of words. Adults point to, name and talk about pictures or real items, and role model appropriate conversation skills: eye contact, close proximity and allowing time for someone to answer.

Physical Development

  • Large muscles:walk, run, climb, balance, throw, kick, jump
  • Small muscles:puzzles, stringing spools, pull-apart toys, using washable crayons & markers, filling and dumping toys into a container, zipping and self-feeding with supervision.

Creative Activities

  • Art:Creating with crayons, colored chalk, washable markers and paint, molding with play dough, designing with paper, collage materials and glue.
  • Blocks: Cloth, plastic, wooden or cardboard blocks along with toy people, animals and vehicles used daily to create scenes.
  • Dramatic play: Pocketbooks, bags, baskets, playhouse furniture, dolls, telephones, toy shopping carts and other play items are available daily for children to use their imagination about things they know and see around them.
  • Music and movement: Musical Instruments, toys, songs, finger plays, recorded music (classical, multicultural, lullabies, rhythm and dance).

Learning from the World Around Them

  • Nature: Daily outdoor time, natural things (flowers, birds, insects, plants animals) are displayed, pointed out and talked about – sand/water play is available regularly.
  • Numbers: Introduction to number ideas and words through number rhymes songs, hearing quantity size words and hearing adults counting items.
  • Five senses: This is the most natural way for toddlers to learn. Children will still be given opportunities to taste and feel things in their mouths, but their other senses will be used more.
  • Shape, size and color: While exploring toys, pictures, and familiar items, children will discover these attributes.